Thursday, July 24

The List

Another day done, the list not so.

I played with V and cuddled him,
but didn't write about his six month milestones.

I wiped his nose,
but didn't call the pediatrician to schedule his six month checkup.

I nursed him,
but didn't clean the pump parts so I could store some milk for the next time I am gone.

I carried my phone with me all day,
but didn't call my friend who is expecting her fourth son to soon make his debut.

I brought the clean clothes to the living room,
but didn't fold them.

I went for a walk with E, and took him to the park,
but I didn't call for more information on a potential preschool for the fall.

I picked up R from summer school,
but didn't find out who his first grade teacher will be in the fall,
nor what school supplies he might need.

I made lunch,
but not the potato salad I have been thinking about.

In my head I made my list,
then let it drift away like the clouds in the sky.

Wednesday, July 9

We didn't bring the kitchen sink ...

... although E. asked if we could bring his play kitchen.

Last week, we visited the lake, stayed at my grandparents' cottage (read free vacation), boated, swam, harvested lake weeds, and fed the mosquitos.

It was nice to get away, to leave behind the daily distractions - the computer, laundry, dishes, laundry, cleaning, diapers, dishes, eating, laundry, diapers ...

I guess we didn't leave it all behind, but there is something so wonderful, relaxing, refreshing, about leaving behind so many of our *things*. I've heard it said, that no matter how big a house you have, you will find enough things to fill it up. We sure love our things here, and they are filling up all the space we have. Unpack and put away one box, and there are still more to follow. Throw everything from the floor of the living room into bags and other things will, as if by magic, appear. I've designated a basket in the corner of the room as "things to take upstairs". There are two partially unpacked boxes and another basket of "things I don't know where to put." On the back stairs reside "things to go downstairs," "things to plant," and "things that we didn't want to leave outside so they were left here instead." AD and I both seem to have inherited the mindset of "waste not, want not." Interpreted another way, you could say, we can't ever seem to get rid of any thing. This is a mild exaggeration, but true enough to affect the way we live. And, of course, the boys learn our habits as well.

Most days, thankfully, I don't worry too much about the mess, but some days it just gets to me. More things means, of course, more things for which I don't have time, don't care to take the time, to care/clean/organize/remove. Pieces of games, toys, and puzzles are spread throughout the house. I try to remember, if it is not my game, toy, or puzzle, that it is fine for the boys to play as they will, and to take responsibility for their own things. But with so many things to choose from, a missing part of one or another leaves little impression on them. I worry what lessons about consumption we teach the boys with so many things around.

Stepping back, I realize we have far fewer things than some, and we do regularly give away or donate whatever we can bear to part with. I also realize that moving 6 times in the past 5 years, 5 years during which we added two more members to our family (even if they re-used a lot of the same baby things), and during which we inherited many things from one who helped to teach us our habit, has taken its toll. I hope we hope stay here long enough to un-shop, de-clutter, and find some semblance of organization for our things. Even so, I'm sure our home will never look like a model, or have any consistent interior decoration other than 'eclectic'.

In the interim,we can visit the lake whenever *things* are fogging our vision, and leave (most of) them behind.

Now, back to the laundry ...